Tuesday, 19 April 2016


Spring has finally arrived.  The snow was washed away with the rain, the birds have come out to play and the geese are floating on the open water.  It is a time of renewal outside and in the studio. 

My granddaughters' birthdays are coming up again.  The eldest just turned nine and I made a couple of accordion books for her about her great grandmother.  I feel it's important to know from what roots we descend. 

The youngest will have her birthday later on this summer, but I am ahead of the game this year.  Her dad says she likes to sing, so I wrote a little poem and made an artist book for her.  I called it Renna Songbird.  

I used my marbled paper for the cover of this accordion book. 

I dyed water colour paper for the pages.  Once dried I did some drawing and coloured some of the images.

This is the beginning of the Enchanted forest in the book.  

Songbirds and dancing trees. 

Renna dancing through the forest.  

 The back cover with a felt heart.  


I have made cards on and off throughout the years and this year I find myself making cards again.  Here is a sampling of the different styles. 

I like to combine my ebru marbled paper with parchment paper.  
 I use pigment pens to create these hand drawn cards.  Every so often I feel the need to add a little colour.  



The black and white cards are interesting as well. 
Lately I have been having fun marbling.  I like to try out different papers to see the effect.  I did the Suminagashi marbling on these cards and used water colour paper.  I like the soft
effect that results. 

The Sales and Leasing Boutique at the Ottawa Art Gallery is carrying a good selection of my cards and some of my books.  
I like making this very portable journal/sketch book/writer's journal.....  It has 30 pages of sketch paper and each page has a small die cut in the bottom right hand corner.The dimensions are: 9 1/4 x 6 1/8 inches/25.3 x 15 cm.

These have pigment drawings on the covers.  

These have Suminagashi marbled covers which I marbled in layers.  The effect is very interesting.  The one on the right has an image that reminds me of a jelly fish.  

I use my ebru marbled papers for the fly leaves in these journals.  
This marbled piece has a crackled effect which reminds me of coral.  
That's all for now. I'm working on a couple of artist books.  One of the books is a collaboration with a local jeweller's antique jewellery and the other is for a juried exhibition in the fall. 

Ottawa Art Gallery, Sales and Leasing, 2 Daly Avenue, Ottawa, ON 
Wallacks Art Supplies, Bank Street, Ottawa, ON 
La Fab Gallery, Old Chelsea, QC
Ottawa School of Art Boutique, 35 George Street, Ottawa, ON 
Have a happy spring and enjoy the sunshine. 



Wednesday, 17 February 2016

First Exhibit of the Year - Eros 2016


Snow, snow and more snow.  Since yesterday  51 cm of snow has fallen.  Everything is very white and fluffy and more snow has started to fall again.  In between all this we have had some very cold weather.  

This past Sunday, Valentine's Day, I attended the Eros 2016  exhibit vernissage at the Arbor Gallery in Vankleek Hill, just outside of Ottawa.  My artist book, Arc of Desire, was chosen to be part of this group exhibit.  Regardless of the cold weather, the event was very well attended.  


This book was in the making over approximately three years.  Every time I found a quote, or the lyrics to a song that I felt would fit into the book, I filed it away.  I wrote a few fictional narratives and at the beginning of last year I decided to see if I had enough material to make the book.  When I started to put it together, all the pieces fell nicely into place, each piece complementing the previous one.  I made a limited edition of six books.  The covers are hand dyed and the materials I used in making the book include, water colour paper, pigment pen drawings around photocopied anatomy pictures, leather, rabbit fur, and  polymer clay.  

The cover is hand dyed water colour paper.  There is a hole though the center of the book in which the phallus passes through and acts as the closure. 

For the opening piece, I used a quote from The Power of Myth by Joseph Campbell, "People say that what we’re all seeking is a meaning for life.  I don’t think that’s what we’re really seeking.  I think that what we’re seeking is an experience of being alive, so that our life experiences on the purely physical plane will have resonances within our own innermost being and reality, so that we actually feel the rapture of being alive."

I found an old book on Anatomy for Artists and photocopied some of the pieces.  Then I enhanced them with my drawings.  I created a master copy and then photocopied it for the blank books.  The text in each book is handwritten, not photocopied.  The quote on this enhanced page is by Ester Perel, Mating in Captivity,“Eroticism reveals to us another world, inside this world.  The senses become servants of the imagination, and lets us see the invisible and hear the inaudible.” 

This is one of the fictional narratives that I wrote.  The theme of the exhibit was first love, one true love.  The narratives I wrote were from the perspective of a couple remembering their first love. 


My sister celebrated a milestone birthday on Valentine's Day.  When I was visiting her in November we took a walk down memory lane and talked about the friends we had when we were teenagers. As we shared our experiences with one another, she made some of her favourite tea for us.  In thinking about a birthday present for her, I decided to make a Japanese hidden compartment box.  

 I covered it with silver Japanese paper and put wooden feet on the box.  I used a small cluster of quartz crystals and a glass heart for the top of the box.  

In the first two compartments I created Past and Present sections.  I used parchment paper for the covers and did some paper cutting.  Under the Past compartment, I put in a story I had written about an experience we had one evening while walking home from the village we lived near.  In the Present compartment I put some specialty tea samples.  

In the hidden compartment, I put the Future.  In a conversation we had, during my visit, she said she would like to take six months and travel Route 66.  In this compartment I put a map of the Route and the lyrics to the song, Get your Kicks on Route 66.  


This winter semester, at the Ottawa School of Art where I have been teaching, a diploma student has asked me to mentor him in the making of an artist book.  This has been a very enjoyable experience for me and his book is progressing nicely. 

Where can you find my work:   
You can also contact me at: bbinder999@gmail.com to inquire about the books, prices, etc.  
That's about all for now.  For those living in Ottawa and surrounding areas, don't get lost in any snow drifts and stay warm.  WIshing everyone a happy spring - it's just around the corner - yes it is - :>)




Wednesday, 27 January 2016

New Year New Work


Happy New Year.  We have turned another corner into a new year, new possibilities and new creations.  I am happy to say I am starting out my year with one of my artist books being selected for an exhibit.  


The exhibit is Eros 2016, an exhibition of erotic art, at the Arbor Gallery http://www.arborgallery.org/exhibition.php?id=142 in Vankleek Hill, Ontario.  It is about one hour south of Ottawa.  The exhibit runs from February 10 to March 13, 2016.  Once the exhibit has opened I'll post pictures of the book.  Better yet, come out and meet the artists and see our work on February 14th for the vernissage from 1:00 - 3:00 pm. 


It's been a long time since I posted any work.  I have started out this new year with some new pieces of work.  I made a book last year using stained glass for the covers.  I was quite happy with the outcome and have decided to do some more.  These books tend to be a little bit heavier than normal and they need to be handled with tender loving care.  They would be great as a guest book, wedding album, sketch book, family memory book or a special journal. 

I made a clam shell box for the stained glass covered book.  I used a green metallic paper with a black background.  It matched the glass covers quite nicely. 

I lined the interior of the box with a quilted satin material.  I purchased this material a long time ago to make myself a vest, which never materialized.  I have put it to good use in the boxes.  

 This stained glass has a lot of texture to it and the veins of colour go from a deep green to a very light green.  It reminds me of a steep lush green mountain.  The inside of the covers are very smooth to the touch.  The spine is stamped cowhide.  The text block is 70 lb/114g Canson drawing paper. 

 I used a synthetic sinew to stitch the signatures with a French style binding.  The book is 9 1/4 x 6 1/4  x 1 1/4 inches /23.5 x16 x 3.2 cm

 This is the clam shell box for a smaller version stained glass book.  I used a stamped cow hide and Hanji paper to cover it. 

 Again I lined it with the quilted satin fabric.  It makes a nice protective surface for the glass covers. 

 The spine is the same leather that I used on the outside of the clam shell box and the glass covers have a soft texture.  The pinkish./beige and white colors are splashed through the transparent glass.  The text block is 70 lb/114g Canson drawing paper.  Each page has a die cut on it.  This book measures 6 x 4 3/4 x 1 1/4 inches/15.2 x 1.1 x 3.2 cm.

Where My Books Can Be Seen and Purchased 

  • Ottawa School of Art, 35 George Street and 245 Centrum Blvd.  Ottawa
  • Ottawa Art Gallery, Sales and Leasing Boutique, 2 Daly Avenue, Ottawa 
  • La Fab Gallery, Chelsea, Quebec 
  • Wallack's Art Supplies, 231 Bank Street, Ottawa 
You may also contact me at: bbinder999@gmail.com to inquire about the books, prices, or if you would like to commission a book.
Wishing you a happy Valentine's day.  



Thursday, 20 August 2015


The dog days of summer are upon us.  We have had an amazingly hot and humid two weeks in Ottawa with evening showers, just enough to keep the grass green and the trees clean. 


I have been thinking about making a secret garden for a while now.  A fellow artist gave me a beautiful piece of Chinese paper depicting a community celebration. There was such joy in this paper when I handled it.  I used this paper to make the secret garden.  It seemed to dictate the type of garden I would make, not what I had in mind, but still a beautiful garden.  

I decided to make a hidden compartment box for the secret garden.  This is the lid of the box. 

When opened it has two compartments. 

This side of the box has a water scene, two small boats on the water, a pagoda and a hut in either corner.  I used stained glass for the water and small stones from the beach to put around it.  The boats and pagoda are made from clay.  

The other side of the box has a clay fisherman sitting on a rock, fishing.  As you can see he has been successful. 

When the box is turned around and opened, the secret garden is exposed.  

The secret garden.  All the figures, bridge and pagodas are made from clay.  I purchased them at a local shop in the market.  The two frogs are carved from bone.  The water is stained glass. 

To complete the secret garden box I used six triangular game dies.  They have numbers on all sides and are red, yellow and tan to match the colours in the paper.   This box measures
15 1/8 x 8 1/8 x 4 ½ in/39.7 x 21 x 11.3 cm.  The stones and stained glass give it a good weight.  


I always have fun making new journals and using the pigment pens to enhance the covers. 

These are single signature, portfolio bound books with corn cob stitching. 

These are multiple signature, long stitch bound books. 

I like to add colour to the books, so I used different coloured thread to stitch them up. 





The cover of the book on the left is made from a Thai paper and I lined it with another handmade paper. 

Lately, I have been drawing eyes and having great fun with it, as you can see. 

My friend Catherine gave me a large piece of stamped leather to make books.  This is the first book I made with the leather as a gift for another. 

That's about all for now.  I'm working on some artist books as well and will post them when completed. 


Ottawa School of Art Boutique, 35 George Street, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada 
Ottawa Art Gallery, Sales and Leasing Boutique, 2 Daly Avenue, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
La Fab Gallery, Chelsea, Quebec, Canada 

You may also contact me at: bbinder999@gmail.com. 

Wishing you all gloriously lazy, hazy dog days of summer.